Author Anthony Hope's sequel to The Prisoner of Zenda had been filmed once before, in 1915. But filmgoers were far more likely to compare this production to Rex Ingram's version of Prisoner of Zenda, which was released in 1922. Rupert of Hentzau suffered greatly in comparison; in spite of lavish production values and an all-star cast, it just didn't have the same spark as <I>Zenda</I>. Part of the reason is the casting -- some of those big names just weren't right for their roles. Bert Lytell was a poor replacement for Lewis Stone, Lew Cody was no Ramon Novarro, and Elaine Hammerstein was nothing more than decorative. Although Rupert of Hentzau (Cody) was supposedly killed at the end of Prisoner of Zenda, he actually escaped and is still alive to cause trouble for Queen Flavia (Hammerstein). Tired of the bad treatment she suffers at the hands of the King (Lytell), Flavia sends for his look-alike, Rudolph Rassendyll (also Lytell). But Rupert intercepts her letter and plans to use it so that he can take the throne. He kills the king and it looks like his scheme may be successful, but Rassendyll defeats him in a duel. Flavia winds up abdicating so that she can become Rassendyll's wife.
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